Pukki strikes twice as Town boss sees red
Town’s wait for a derby win goes on after Teemu Pukki led Norwich to victory at an eventful Carrow Road.
The Canaries’ top scorer found the net twice in the second-half to take his side to victory after Onel Hernandez had given the hosts an early lead.
Town rallied after that early setback and Alan Judge went close to an equaliser midway through the second-half before Pukki took centre stage.
Paul Lambert was sent-off just before half-time after an altercation with a member of the Norwich staff and watched the second-half from the directors' box.
Jonas Knudsen returned to the side, skipper Luke Chambers back from injury as Town made five changes to the team that went down to Sheffield Wednesday last week.
Norwich got off to the perfect start, Hernandez burying the ball into the net from close range inside the first two minutes after Max Aarons had made inroads down the right and Blues failed to deal with the cross.
Marco Vrancic headed over as the Canaries looked for a second, Aarons again the provider with another cross, Pukki sliding the ball wide of the near post, then Jon Nolan did well to bring Tom Trybull’s run to a halt inside the area.
Matt Pennington’s diving header stopped Pukki getting in on goal, Town responding with Judge whipping in a cross that Freddie Sears met, his effort deflected wide, Chambers heading over from the corner.
Sears found space down the left as Town began to get a foothold in the game, his cross cleared by Christoph Zimmermann, while at the other end Vrancic was over from the edge of the box after Emi Buendia had set him up.
Judge’s shot was blocked on the edge of the box following slick passing in the middle of the park, Marco Stiepermann sending a left footer just wide, Trevoh Chalobah then wide from 25 yards after Judge had set him up.
Tim Krul saved low down from Judge after Will Keane had opened up a chance for the Republic of Ireland international, Pennington just doing enough to deflect Stiepermann’s pass back to Bart Bialkowski as Pukki looked to be in.
Town were forced into a change before the break with the injured Sears replaced by Ellis Harrison. The substitute was immediately in the action, forcing an opening for Judge, who saw his shot deflected for a corner, Knuden first to the flagkick but his header skimmed over.
Nolan was booked for a foul right in front of the dug-out that prompted a scuffle between the teams, Paul Lambert and a member of the Norwich coaching staff sent to the stands. Alex Tettey replaced the injured Vrancic before the break.
Pennington did well to stop Pukki eight yards out as Norwich looked for second straight after the restart, Harrison found Keane inside the box, the ball deflected for a corner, then Krul claimed Judge’s cross under pressure.
Town were carrying a threat and Zimmermann was at full stretch to block Harrison’s strike, Chalobah’s drive and cross forcing another corner, Krul holding firm again.
Judge was inches wide of an equaliser on 65 minutes but seconds later Norwich extended their lead, Pennington lost possession and Pukki did the rest with his left foot.
Chalobah had his shot beaten out by the yellow wall as Town looked for an immediate response, but the Canaries could have made it three when they caught Blues out on the counter, Chambers doing superbly to stop Stiepermann when it was two against one.
Norwich had the ball in the net from a corner but Pukki was offside, Teddy Bishop a second change for Blues replacing Skuse.
Pukki wrapped the points up for the home side 10 minutes from time, the striker poking the ball home after Buendia’s precise pass put him in on goal to maintain Norwich’s promotion push and leave Blues’ wait for that derby win to continue.
Norwich: Krul, Godfrey, Zimmermann, Vrancic (Tettey 45), Lewis, Buendia, Stiepermann (Cantwell 84), Trybull, Pukki (Rhodes 89), Hernandez, Aarons. Subs not used: McGovern, McLean, Hanley, Srbeny. Booked: Lewis, Trybull, Stiepermann, Cantwell.
Town: Bialkowski, Bree, Chambers, Pennington, Knudsen, Skuse (Bishop 74), Chalobah, Nolan (Downes 842) Judge, Keane, Sears (Harrison 42). Subs not used: Gerken, Jackson, , Elder, Nsiala. Booked: Skuse, Nolan, Downes.